Unlocking the Potential of European Mobility Data: PrepDSpace4Mobility’s Analysis Report Reveals Crucial Insights

PrepDSpace4Mobility has successfully completed its 12-month project period with the presentation of a comprehensive analysis report that lays out possible roadmaps for the common European mobility data space (EMDS). Built on extensive stakeholder engagement activities, workshops, and surveys, the report provides a detailed examination of foundational principles, technical developments, and business and governance models. The analyses reveal multiple pathways for the evolution of the future EMDS. In a collective effort, all stakeholders involved must collaboratively shape the EMDS’ future direction and roles within its expansive framework.

EIT Urban Mobility, an initiative by the European Institute of Innovation and Technology (EIT), a body of the EU, was actively engagement in the project and will integrate its learning in other future projects on Mobility Data Space in which it is engaged in.

The full report is published here by next Monday:PrepDSpace4Mobility (mobilitydataspace-csa.eu)

Empowering Europe’s data economy

The new State of the Digital Decade report reveals that 75 % of Europeans emphasise the need for stronger cybersecurity, improved connectivity, and enhanced data protection. Currently, the EU relies on foreign sources for more than 80 % of its digital products, services, infrastructures, and intellectual property[1]. The EMDS will transform the way mobility connects Europe by unlocking the potential of mobility data with a cross-sectoral approach to data harmonisation and interoperability. Data-based decision-making will foster new use cases and innovations in addressing cross-border mobility and logistics challenges, empowering Europe’s businesses and citizens.

Bridging the knowledge and technology gap

The future EMDS must offer a technical infrastructure and governance mechanisms that meet the demands of the diverse European stakeholder landscape.  While the report acknowledges the transformative vision of the EMDS, it highlights stakeholders’ concerns about the clarity of the EMDS’ value proposition for the different parties involved. The business model of the EMDS must go beyond a one-size-fits-all approach but empower participants to create value tailored to unique use cases through innovative solutions.

Technical governance as the backbone of the EMDS

For data to flow seamlessly and securely across European data spaces, the report stresses the need for a robust technical governance framework. It is comprised of a multi-level and bi-directional structure that facilitates interoperability at a base level for all sectoral data spaces. This structure is to guarantee a harmonised approach to data sovereignty, trust, and discoverability throughout the European data sharing environment; they lay the groundwork for an equal and empowering data space approach, assuring that data remains under the control of its rightful owner, that only verified entities can engage in data exchanges, and that data can be accessed and found in a harmonised process throughout all data spaces.

Readers of the report can expect an in-depth analysis of the EMDS initiative, covering data gaps, business models, governance, legal considerations, technical aspects, data interoperability, trust, and data value creation. The report also underlines alignment with key EU initiatives and offers recommendations for creating an interoperable, secure, and value-driven mobility data sharing environment in Europe.

Looking ahead

While the report points to several requirements, the future governance structure of the EMDS is not yet finalised. PrepDSpace4Mobility’s analysis report highlights five potential approaches to the operational role of the EMDS, each offering a unique path forward with distinct opportunities and challenges. Possible options are to create a(n):

  1. European Commission-led authority 
  2. Member State led European Digital Infrastructure Consortium (EDIC) for mobility and logistics data
  3. European Association of existing data spaces in mobility 
  4. European-level regulatory or certification framework 
  5. Expert Working Group defining and disseminating interoperability guidelines for various mobility and logistics data ecosystems. 

The final governance structure for the EMDS remains to be decided and needs careful consideration of the governance and technical options presented in the report. Further, the evolution of resources provided by the Data Spaces Support Centre (DSSC), the expanding set of horizontal data regulations, and the development of shared middleware for European data spaces require continuous assessment and flexibility. Future initiatives and projects supporting the EMDS require strong policy directions in order to provide a clear pathway. Finally, planning stability will be crucial for all stakeholders engaged in mobility data sharing initiatives.

About PrepDSpace4Mobility

Press releases of the project:

1/12/2022 17 partners across Europe to lay the foundation for a common European mobility data space – EIT Urban Mobility

30/04/2023 400 data sharing ecosystems exist within the EU in the mobility sector – EIT Urban Mobility

PrepDSpace4Mobility contributes to the European Commission’s Strategy for Data. By mapping existing mobility and transport data ecosystems, an extensive catalogue of European transport data ecosystems was created. Building on these activities, technical building blocks and suitable governance frameworks for securely sharing data and managing data exchange across Europe were identified. A consortium of 17 partners, kicked off the Preparatory Action for the Data Space for Mobility (PrepDSpace4Mobility) project in October 2022. Led and coordinated by acatech (Germany), activities were carried out by Amadeus SAS (France), EIT Urban Mobility,  an initiative of the European Institute of Innovation and Technology, a body of the European Union, (Spain), FIWARE (Germany), FhG (Germany), IDSA (Germany), iSHARE (Netherlands), TNO (Netherlands), USI (Germany), VTT (Finland), EMTA (France), Group ADP (France), KU Leuven (Belgium), ERTICO (Belgium), BAST (Germany), UIH (Hungary), and MDS (Germany). The European Commission has dedicated one million Euro to the 12-month project, funded under the Digital Europe Programme.

[1] Special Eurobarometer SP532: “The digital decade”, March 2023